Weekly Wisdoms for the week of August 4, 2014
It can be easy to compromise one's inner life in hopes of maintaining a good outer life. While there is certainly nothing wrong with a good outer life, we can't allow our reputation with others to become more important than our reputation with God -- He desires to be the most important thing in every person's life.
King David knew the importance of putting God first in order to maintain a good inner life. In Psalm 27:4, he wrote, One thing I ask of the LORD, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life. David made God -- and spending time in God's presence -- the one thing he wanted. For David, his inner life was more important than his outer life.
1 Peter 3:4 says that your beauty should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God's sight.
While it is by no means wrong to have a good outer life and to look good outwardly, God values inner beauty much more. That's because your outer life is your reputation with people, but your inner life is your reputation with God.
Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe (Proverbs 29:25).
A person who is ruled by the fear of man is one whose decisions are dictated by what other people think. Such a person is a people-pleaser. One ruled by the fear of man will repeatedly base decisions on questions like "How does this make me look?", "Do you think they'll like it?", or "What if they don't approve?". It is certainly not wrong to ask for input from other people (indeed, it's wise to seek feedback from others); however, it is wrong—not just wrong, but foolish—for your decisions to be guided more by feedback from others than by feedback from God.
To fear God means to take him at his word, knowing that he will follow through on all his promises. A person who fears the Lord is one whose decisions are guided by God.
There are more than a dozen verses in the Bible that make very clear the advantage of being one whose life is guided by the fear of the Lord. Blessed is the man who fears the Lord (Psalm 112:1). Humility and the fear of the Lord bring wealth and honor and life (Proverbs 22:4). The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Psalm 111:10). He who fears the Lord has a secure fortress, and for his children it will be a refuge. The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life (Proverbs 14:26-27).
It's no wonder Proverbs 31:30 gives us this nugget of wisdom: Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
If you want the fear of God to guide your life, then base your actions on questions like "What does God think about this?", "Would God approve of this?", or "Would I do this if Jesus were right here watching me?".
If you want your life to be blessed, let it be ruled by the fear of God.
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